Written by PETA
The NBA finals are upon us, and Los Angeles Lakers small forward Ron Artest is up to his old tricks—playing lock-down defense on Paul Pierce of the Boston Celtics and bringing his patented passion and energy to a Lakers team that acquired him in the off-season for just that reason.
Artest may be vying for his first championship ring, but he's already got one accolade in the bag—PETA's Defensive Player of the Year award for defending dogs and cats against the animal overpopulation crisis. Through this eye-catching ad, the tough-as-nails Artest urges his fans to "have the balls" to spay or neuter their dogs:
This busy athlete also took the time to shoot a public service announcement for PETA, asking people to make a difference for animals by getting involved.
We wish Ron-Ron the best of luck in bringing home the title this year! Around the country, fingers (and paws) are crossed in thanks for his full-court-press for animals.
Written by Jennifer O'Connor
As we promised yesterday, we've got exclusive photos from the unveiling of Los Angeles Lakers forward Ron Artest's new spay-and-neuter billboard in L.A. The first 20 attendees at the unveiling scored big-time, receiving coupons for free spay or neuter surgeries:
With Spay Day less than a week away, the debut of Artest's ad couldn't have come at a better time. "These animals are literally dying for a good home," he said. "Spaying and neutering your companion animals is the way to bring an end to the overpopulation crisis."
Now that's a slam dunk!
Written by Logan Scherer
It's a good thing that my hubby, Tim, has such a huge heart, or I would probably be in a pickle right now. You see, this year, he shares his birthday with Spay Day, which is this Tuesday, February 23. Lucky for you, that means a starry slideshow of PETA's brightest and boldest spay-and-neuter ads (versus mushy photos of Tim and me on vacation in Boulder).
Feeling inspired? Great! Tell us how you'll help animals on Spay Day.
Written by Karin Bennett
Ron Artest is the compassionate king of any court he steps on. Just in time for Spay Day on February 23, the NBA All-Star and Los Angeles Lakers forward will reveal his new spay-and-neuter billboard tomorrow in Los Angeles at 8238 Beverly Blvd. (near Sweetzer Avenue). The first 20 people to arrive will receive coupons for free spay or neuter surgeries provided by the Sam Simon Foundation—a Los Angeles–area organization that runs a mobile clinic providing free spay and neuter surgeries and low-cost veterinary services.
Check back tomorrow for exclusive photos from the event. See you then!
In a recent Houston Chronicle article, Rockets small forward Ron Artest openly admits that he doesn't have the best track record when it comes to animal care. In the article, he confesses that because he spends a lot of time traveling, he once left one of his dogs vulnerable to neglect. In a refreshingly candid admission, he says, "I was an irresponsible pet owner."
What sets Artest apart from other "irresponsible pet owners," though, is that he is man enough to admit that he's made mistakes, and he's now doing all he can to educate others so that they don't make the same mistakes he did. "PETA came and showed me how to be a better pet owner," he says. "I loved my dogs. You just need to be more mature and accountable for how you treat your animals. I had to be educated."
These days, Artest can be found volunteering his time to help the Houston Humane Society or lending his star power to PETA's campaigns. "I've told my people that whenever [the Houston Humane Society] need[s] me for something, they've got to make it happen," he says. "I've always loved animals. Now I've learned how to be responsible."
In a video that was shot behind the scenes at the photo shoot for his PETA spay-and-neuter ad, Artest talks about his passion for helping animals, and he also condemns dogfighting. (He has even placed a plea right on the front page of his personal Web site to urge people to spay and neuter their animal companions.) Check out the interview b-roll here:
Speaking of dogfighting, another star athlete who has had run-ins with the law over his treatment of dogs isn't exactly jumping through hoops in an effort to show that he's learned the error of his ways. Former Atlanta Falcons quarterback and convicted dogfighter Michael Vick did attend PETA's "Developing Empathy for Animals" seminar, but he has not gone out of his way to show the public or his fans that he feels any remorse for torturing and killing dogs.
Now, just as he is on the verge of being released from federal prison, Vick is reportedly shopping around for a book deal. It's pretty unlikely that his book will be subject to the "Son of Sam" law (which is a type of law that aims to prevent criminals from profiting from their crimes) because Vick's victims were dogs. Unless the book basically consists of the words, "I was a sick, cruel, despicable jerk, and I'm sorry," and all the proceeds go to animal protection charities, we ain't buyin' it.
Written by Jennifer Cierlitsky
When Ron Artest isn't sticking it to his opponents on the basketball court, he's sticking up for animals. That's why the Houston Rockets forward teamed up with us and the Houston Humane Society to star in an ad urging people to get their dogs "fixed."
"These animals are literally dying for a good home," says Artest, the NBA Defensive Player of the Year for the 2003-2004 season. "Millions of dogs and cats in shelters across the country are euthanized every year because there simply aren't enough good homes for them. Spaying and neutering your [animal companion] will help control the overpopulation problem."
Artest unveiled the ad today in honor of Spay Day. Check out photos from the event below:
Written by Christine Doré
Sacramento Kings forward Ron Artest is the star of a new PSA for PETA urging basketball fans to "have the balls to spay or neuter your dog." Artest has never been shy about speaking his mind, and, in addition to bringing him a fair share of headlines throughout his career, this trait has shown itself off the court through community involvement, charity work, and a willingness to speak up for those less fortunate than himself. This is what he had to say about his new ad for PETA.
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Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights? Read more.